Filling the void
With Cristiano Ronaldo swapping Madrid for Turin after winning three straight Champions League titles, it was inevitable that the focal point of Real Madrid’s attack would shift. Who’s the player that has stepped into the void left? Benzema, a player that has been within Madrid’s ranks for approaching a decade. Finally, it appears that the Frenchman is able to play his “true football” as he mentioned in an interview with French Football.
One area to look into initially is how Benzema’s role of provider has changed since the departure of Ronaldo. A comparison between Benzema’s heatmaps in 17/18 & 18/19 show how his position has become more central, in more dangerous areas such as Zone 14 and increased activity in the penalty box. Couple this with how Benzema has increased the number of shots per game from 2.24 last season to 2.97 in 18/19. In addition to this, there has been a marked increase in the accuracy of his shooting, his shots on target accuracy has risen from 34% in 17/18 to 48% this season.
Goals, goals, goals
Naturally, strikers will be judged by the goals they score, and there are few places in world football where the spotlight shines brighter than Real Madrid.